Abaddon magazine

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Monday, December 5, 2022

Review: Burial Choir – The Eucharist of Martyrs

Label: Fallen Temple

Date: September 20th, 2021

I have been to so many funerals, and to be honest, just to put myself above the pain and grief, in my head were always happy songs. If I would even think of funeral doom metal, I would probably be six feet under because I always considered it boring (to death). If the band’s name is Burial Choir, what might they deliver? Let’s take it slow…

We are actually talking about the Finnish project led by Mikko Lehto and Mika Havumäki. After they released debut album “Iconoclast” in 2016, Burial Choir hit with “The Eucharist of Martyrs” in late September 2021. This time, the band has the support of Polish label Fallen Temple. “The Eucharist of Martyrs” contains four songs with a total play time around 40 minutes, which is quite acceptable if we are talking about the funeral doom metal.

Lyrical themes are of course fitting the genre, but if you closely look at its structure, you will see you are dealing with masterfully done compositions. The band built a great atmosphere around the lyrical composition. 

The first song “Anathema” is a ten minutes long slow pace song (do I really need to say it since we know which genre we are facing here?). You might notice that drums are really minimally used and the whole atmosphere is built with precision or even perfection. In this song, to be precise, guitars dominate as well as slightly growl vocals.

The second one, also a ten minutes long song, “The Eucharist of Martyrs”, is led by drums, weeping guitar with a bell chime in the background. It is very gentle and in the first three and a half minutes if you think it is an instrumental, but dirty growls might surprise you. In the end gentle guitar just puts the whole atmosphere to a higher level.

“Clandestine Symbols” again starts with a long interlude but this time vocals are a bit calmer than in the previous song which adjusts dynamic. The vocals here maybe the best than in any other song emphasizes despair. 

Bell chime, where else we are if not in the church? This is my favorite piece from this EP because it seems it is more melodic than others, “The Cinder Altars” deliver the deepest growl you will hear on this album. 

I have zero complaints pointing to the music, but the art cover, booklet… I just wish I could read the lyrics because the way I got the promo material is quite impossible. Blurred, doubled brown letters on black background are just simply hard to read.

Overall, this album is recommended to all of you who enjoy an extremely slow tempo, sleepy atmosphere but still dramatic enough that leads to the world of emptiness and despair. Still, I can not get rid of the feeling that I like “Iconoclast” more.